Alex VFW 16s are tournament champions
The Alexandria VFW 16s captured the tournament title Sunday in their own invitational, defeating Irondale, Shakopee and Delano in pool play before battling Champlin Park for the crown.
The 16s opened against Irondale, winning 12-3 in five innings on a new 8-run rule this year.
"We got a good pitching performance by Dan Kuhn," said Alex coach Orin Schueler. "Spencer Lucas also went 3-for-3."
Next up for the 16s was Shakopee and Alexandria emerged with a 7-2 win behind Micah Hedstrom's pitching performance. Hedstrom struck out two and walked three, giving up just two earned runs in the game.
Parker Revering had a pair of long doubles in the win.
Alexandria's final pool play game was a 6-1 win over Delano with Cole McLaughlin going the distance for the 16s. He gave up five hits and only one earned run in the game, striking out six.
Anderson again led the hitting with three.
The championship game against Champlin Park turned out to be a classic, with Alexandria winning 3-1.
"It was a good baseball game," said Schueler. "A lot of good putouts and a lot of good plays. A real pitcher's duel."
Down 1-0 after two innings, Alexandria rallied back in the fourth as Travis Krueger doubled home Anderson to tie the game.
In the fifth, Brody Erdman reached on an error and moved to third on a single by Chris Setterstrom. He scored on a long fly ball by Cody Weisel, giving the 16s the lead.
Alexandria scored its final run of the game in the sixth as Grant Toivonen singled, went to third on a double and scored on a passed ball.
It was in the top of the seventh that things got exciting as Lucas, who went the distance for Alexandria, struck out two with runners at first and third.
Champlin Park tried to advance a runner to second with a steal to get two in scoring position, but from his catcher's position, Setterstrom gunned down the runner. Shortstop Parker Revering dug the ball out of the dirt to end the threat.
"It was a thrilling way to end the game," said Schueler.
Alexandria is now 9-2 on the season.
VFW 16s 11, Benson 1
What was supposed to be a doubleheader turned into just one game for the VFW 16s team as they defeated Benson 11-1 last week.
"Early on, Benson made some great plays," said Schueler. "They had a double play. But we broke it open in the third."
Alexandria scored three runs in that third inning, and added four more in the fifth and two in the sixth, but it was the defense that had the highlight reel plays.
"Kaden Anderson had two outstanding plays in centerfield," said Schueler. "He threw out a runner at the plate and had a catch on a line drive by Connelly, diving and grabbing his hit about three inches above the ground for an out. It was a beautiful catch."
Anderson also went 4-four-4 at the plate to aid in the win.
IRONDALE 002 01 3
ALEXANDRIA 426 00 12
PITCHING - Dan Kuhn (W) 9so, 1 bb, 2 er.
HITTING - Kaden Anderson 2, Spencer Lucas 3, Travis Krueger 2, Parker Revering 2, Cole McLaughlin 1.
SHAKOPEE 100 000 1 1
ALEXANDRIA 340 000 X 7
PITCHING - Micah Hedstrom (W), 2 so, 3 bb, 2 er.
HITTING - Grant Toivonen 2, Parker Revering 3, Travis Krueger 2, Cody Weisel 2, Chris Setterstrom 1, Brayden Amundson 1.
DELANO 000 001 1
ALEXANDRIA 103 002 X
PITCHING - Cole McLaughlin (W) 7 ip, 5 h, 1 bb, 1 er.
HITTING - Kaden Anderson 3, Casey Hammerback 2, Travis Krueger 1, Parker Revering 1, Brayden Amundson 1, Cole McLaughlin 1.
CHAPIO 010 000 0 1
ALEXANDRIA 000 111 X 3
PITCHING - Spencer Lucas (W) 7 ip, 3 so, 1 bb, 5 h.
HITTING LEADERS - Travis Krueger double; Chris Setterstrom singl, Cody Weisel single, Grant Toivonen single.
ALEXANDRIA 11, BENSON 1
ALEXANDRIA 113 042 11-16-1
BENSON 010 000 1-6-4
PITCHING - Cole McLaughlin (W) and Chris Setterstrom; Lindahl (L) and Staton.
ALEXANDRIA HITTING - Kaden Anderson 4, Travis Krueger 3, Brayden Amundson 2, Brody Erdman 2, Chris Settestrom 2, Spencer Lucas 1, Parker Revering 1, Cole McLaughlin 1.